Tuesday, June 26, 2012

Blushing Brides

Hanna has been asking me for months to wear my 'bride' dress. She's all about being a bride someday like mommy and she looks at our wedding picture often. I kept stalling her as it seemed like too much effort to get out the dress. However, this past Sunday was our wedding anniversary and so it seemed like perfect timing to play dress up. Her eyes lit up and excitement bubbled over when I told she could be my bridesmaid and wear the veil.

I have to admit I was a little excited myself to wear my dress again. I think no matter how old we get, there is a ''little girl wanting to be princess'' in all of us. We both started twirling and gliding around, all smiles and giggles. I teased Wayne that I was his blushing young bride again. The groom though, wasn't too eager to dress up; so he got the photographer's position.

After our photo shoot, I had to convince Hanna that I couldn't wear my dress all day but said she could have the veil to play with, much to her delight. So now the dress is packed away again, maybe I'll pull it out on our tenth anniversary. I actually would love to do professional photos again as we seemed to have missed the wave of photography that we see now in our local community. Our pictures almost seem outdated. Might be difficult to convince the groom to do that over again. So for now I downloaded a free demo for photo editing and had fun tweaking these pics. 

Hope she will always feel like she's a little princess, and hold onto that child-like wonder for many years.

So thankful for the blessing of marriage to this man I love. I hope that our children will learn by our example, that they will see our bond only growing stronger. Through our roles as husband and wife I pray that we will raise up sons and daughters that will someday yield the values and hearts needed for for the marriage journey. We have all kinds of ups and downs, but each day it comes down to making a choice to love, forgive the greivances, accept the differences, change as we are convicted and rest in the assurance that this is God's work.

Song of Solomon 2:16 - My beloved is mine and I am his...


Tuesday, June 12, 2012

Passing Storm

''My grace is sufficient for you, for my power is made perfect in weakness.'' Therefore I will boast all the more gladly about my weaknesses, so that Christ's power may rest on me. That is why, for Christ's sake, I delight in weaknesses, in insults, in hardships, in persecutions, in difficulties. For when I am weak, then I AM STRONG. 2 Corinthians 12:9-10

I hardly know where to begin. The last several days have taken the thoughts and hearts of many to a young woman who is very dear to many of us. To share her sorrow, feel the depth of her pain and the aching wish to help ease that saddness as she says goodbye to the man she dreamed of a lifetime with. The kind of goodbye no one wants to say.

After the days of rain I stepped out to marvel at the beads of water collected on the plants. It reminded me of the collective sadness we as families, friends and communities feel when tragedy strikes. We pour ourselves out, raining down tears, compassion and efforts of comfort though the sharing of songs, prayers, verses on Facebook, through phone calls or travelling the distance to be with those mourning. It`s a stormy time, like we are clouds pulling together in pursuit of releasing the pain, the `whys`, the humanness that hampers our understanding of tradegies.

There is strength in a storm. A strength that rises out of the storms of our hearts as we band together to call on Christ`s power, a grace so sufficient.
Grace that forgives our questioning, doubting humanness.
Grace that gives us a measure of understanding that it`s all for a purpose, according to His plan.
Grace that heals, soothes, and gives hope.
Grace that teaches us to count joy in all circumstances.
Grace that promises no earthly security, but only that He will walk with us through all situations.
Grace that uses the life of one person to band together the hearts of many.

Do you see that, through the storm, there is power so infusing that we are like the plants, soaking up drops of God`s inifinite Grace. That these are teaching moments for us all. We may feel weakness through the heartaches of our lives, but we are people designed to be healed. Our bodies fight to close up open wounds and so our broken spirits long to be healed. As rain nurtures a plant, The Healer nurtures with His Grace. To bind up our wounds. Psalm 147:3 He healeth the broken in heart, and bindeth up their wounds.

Ìt`s hard to see clearly through the storm, leaving us wondering whether we`ll ever see clearly again. Storms always pass though, even the storm that wiped out most of mankind came to an end to bring up again the beauty of earth and the promise of a rainbow.
I know a rainbow will shine down on my dear cousin as she weathers this storm of her life. I pray that through the pain, though it always leaves a lasting impression, she may find a peace that passes all understanding. That someday looking back she will see more clearly, That she will rise up and be called blessed to have shared a brief time with a man through whom she saw the image of God, in whose presence she may have an eternity.

A life cut short is not a life wasted at all. We all have just enough time.

I think God allows hardship so that in alleviating it, we might understand his mercy.-author unknown